World of Warcraft: The Movie?

The geek stars have aligned: they're going to make a World of Warcraft movie. So how well will the world's most popular online game make the transition to the big screen?

World of Warcraft

It took them longer than I expected, but it’s finally happened. Blizzard, while primarily a video game company, hasn’t met a marketing opportunity it hasn’t liked (at least yet). They’ve released eight games or expansion packs (with another one announced raising the player leveling in World of Warcraft to 80 and once again making all the old epic weapons worthless), a trading card game, two board games, a tabletop role%u2011playing game, and eight book series (with yet another one on the way).

Now the world’s most popular MMORPG is making the leap to the big screen. With the announcement of a World of Warcraft movie at BlizzCon 2007, WoW dorks like myself now have a reason to log out of Azeroth for a couple of hours, recoil in horror at the glowy ball of fire in the sky, and stumble down to our local multiplex sometime in 2009. Fortunately for us, when Blizzard commits to something, it goes all out.

Producer Thomas Tull (who knows his way around swords and beastly men thanks to his work on 300) has signed on to guide the project, which has been in development for some time. Legendary Pictures has ponied up a budget of $100 million dollars for the PG-13 picture, which isn’t going to be a boring quest movie with a lot of people in grubby costumes walking around and talking, but a war picture set between the events of Warcraft III and World of Warcraft depicting the war between the heroic (or at least human) Alliance and the evil (or at least monstrous-looking) Horde.

The official line? “It’s actually not like the great adventure. It’s not so much a quest movie. It’s more of a war movie. Well, okay, it’s absolutely a war movie. Cultures grinding up to a horrible moment where it just all spills over and gets out of control. Less of an adventure party quest-type situation. More of an armies building to an inevitable conclusion type situation.” (Source.)

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There’s no cast assigned yet, or a director attached, but I’d be lying if I didn’t confess to being very excited about seeing the familiar lands of Azeroth and Outland on the big screen. The proposed rating is a bit troublesome, but as Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers taught us, you can kill thousands of living things on screen so long as you don’t flash a nipple or say many bad words.

Find more by Ron Hogan at his blog, Subtle Bluntness, or daily at Shaktronics.